what you can do with your old phones in Singapore.

Like the phone boxes kept just in case you find a new purpose for it, here’s what you can do with the old phones you’ve held on to.

With Lunar New Year fast approaching, most of us will understandably be in the midst of spring cleaning. And by now, you would most likely have chanced across the cabinet where you’ve kept all your old phones (and by old, we mean ranging from Nokia or Motorola to your iPhone 6). Whether for sentimental reasons or because you’re unsure about what to do with your devices, we’ve compiled a rough guide on the various ways you can declutter your drawers.

1. trade-in your phones for a discount.

Companies like Apple have initiatives in which they will accept your old mobile phones in return for a discount on your next purchase with them. If the device is in good condition, Apple can arrange a new owner, helping ensure that waste is diverted away from the landfill.

Take note that you would have to submit the phone weeks in advance before you’ll be able to receive your cashback. So make sure to plan ahead – this ensures that there is enough time for the servicemen to check through your phone and that there are no problems with it.

However, even if your appliance isn’t in the best state and thus doesn’t qualify for credit, the company will still recycle your phone – regardless of the model or condition. Yes, even if your phone is not from Apple and from a third party instead. Apple partners with Li Tong Recycling to help recycle electronic products safely and securely which ensures the environment also benefits.

Otherwise, there are also other resellers you can visit to trade in your phones. For example, Mister Mobile is a popular franchise with outlets all across the island for you.

2. donate your old working phones to non-profit organisations.

photo by Bridge the Digital Divide on Instagram.

If your phone is in good condition, why not donate your phone to one of the many charities we have? Bridge the Digital Divide is an initiative that asks for donations of pre-loved, digital devices like laptops, tablets and handphones from companies and individuals. Then, they partner with various non-profit organisations and redirect these appliances to a good cause. 

Together with Transient Workers Count Too (TWC2), they also launched #PhoneIsLifeline, a mobile phone donation drive that allows members of the public to donate their old mobile phones to migrant workers who require them. 

Do take note there are specific prerequisites for the phones being donated. One, they ought to be fully functional and have good battery life. Two, the phone needs to be able to work with a SIM card and connect to a mobile network and Wifi. Lastly, the device should be able to read QR codes and have the TraceTogether app downloaded. 

While mobile phones with chargers are preferred, they are not necessary. Bridge the Digital Divide will try their best to source a compatible charger, so don’t be worried if you can’t find a charger alongside your phone.

photo by itsRainingRaincoats.

Another example is itsRainingRaincoats is accepting phones that are in good condition. They also accept a variety of other objects, so do make sure to check the list to see if there are other items you can rehome as well. 

Donating your items would be a nice choice to give back to society and simultaneously give a second life to your old devices lying around. Sounds like a double win to me!

3. recycle your old phones.

photo by Grace Fu on Facebook.

There are various schemes that allow you to drop off your phones for recycling. National Environmental Agency (NEA) and ALBA have partnered up to collect all kinds of devices, including the old “brick-like” Nokias to devices with shattered screens. 

First up, they have quarterly electronic waste collection drives organised with Town Councils across the entire island. Anyone can bring down the electronic items from the approved list and subsequently have them collected and recycled. 

Secondly, they also came up with a list of collection points where they accept a variety of electronic waste, ranging from lamps to tablets and even phone cables. Refer to this map or this list of collection points to find a bin near you, and be sure to double-check the kind of electronic waste each point accepts! 

StarHub, as well, has collection bins in their Plaza Singapura and Tampines Malls outlets that are open to anyone who intends to donate their old phones. They have a full list of products they accept, so be sure to check it out to maximize your trip down.

Phones should not be treated as everyday trash and thrown down the rubbish chute due to the possibility of toxic chemicals leaking out. Instead, it can and should be disposed of through the proper methods, be it by recycling or other means.

Like this article? Why not check out 5 places to donate your items while spring cleaning or where you can donate your used red packets?


The copywriting intern who likes spending way too much of her free time looking for small trinkets and watching two hour long youtube video essays.

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